Yay! It’s finally October! I know it’s like a week into the month, but I’m still so excited that my favorite time of year is finally here! I love everything about Fall and October is my favorite month of the season (31 days of Halloween anyone?).
Another thing I love about October is that it is Non-GMO Awareness Month, something I personally feel very passionate about and love to spread as much info on as I can (you can check out my resource guide here).
To kick off Non-GMO month (albeit a week late!), I thought I’d start by sharing this very informative book I’ve been reading by Melissa Diane Smith, a health journalist, holistic nutrition expert and health educator. This book is a definitive consumers guide to understanding not just what GMOs are, but what foods and products they are in (even hidden ingredients) and how to successfully avoid them.
Most people by now know what GMOs are, but if you don’t, here are the basics. A GMO (which stands for genetically modified organism) is an organism (plant, animal, microorganism or other) whose DNA has been altered with the genes of another unrelated organism to obtain certain desirable traits (such as pesticide resistance). These new genes can come from other plants, animals, bacteria, or viruses. In simpler terms, a genetic engineer artificially inserts genes from one organism into another. These newly modified creations can only be made in a lab and are not something nature can produce, as some people mistakenly believe.
Food that has been genetically modified still looks identical to its natural counterpart and there are many GM ingredients lurking in packaged and processed foods, as well as personal care and beauty products. Because they are not required to be labeled, it can be tricky to know exactly which ingredients are GM or not.
Thankfully, there are many resources out there (like this book) to help make some of the guesswork less stressful! 🙂
And as more food seems to fall under the genetic engineer’s “knife”, more awareness is being brought to the forefront. There is a definite growing movement of anti-GMO sentiment and it is only getting bigger…becoming more of a revolution! In fact, it was the fastest growing food movement in the natural foods industry in 2013 and it continues to shake up the food world today!
I could go on and on, but to keep this post from being overly long, I’ll just focus on the highlights going forward..:-)
Some highlights & takeaways from this book:
The top 10 reasons to avoid GMOs:
- The desire for pure food & to not be a lab rat
- The desire to protect health
- The desire to favor nature over industry
- The desire to avoid pesticides
- The desire to be good stewards of the Earth & protect the environment
- The desire to protect bees & other wildlife – sadly, for the first time in history, the bumble bee (an important pollinator of our food) has been added to the endangered species list!
- The desire to withdraw business from GM seed companies
- The desire to support local & organic food growers and ethical food companies that make quality products
- The desire to contribute to a collective consumer rejection of GMO’s, forcing them out of our food supply
- The desire to take back our food, health & planet
The eat GMO-free challenge:
Melissa shares a 31-day challenge of eating completely non-GMO, and she offers tips to help you stay on track. There’s more info on it here. I think this is a great way to start living a more non-GMO lifestyle! To make it more fun, have your friends and family join in!
Detailed instructions on avoiding GMOs when shopping & eating out:
She pretty much covers everything you can think of – from cooking oils, to beverages, to meats, to packaged foods to frozen, etc..
There’s really so much information in this book that it’s difficult to get everything in one post! I definitely, highly recommend that anyone who wishes to educate themselves more on GMOs and to learn how to effectively avoid them, to get this book! Seriously! It’s become one of my favorite health conscious books ever (it’s like my non-GMO bible)!
Also, from now until Oct. 17th, Melissa is graciously offering $5 off her book (link here), so take advantage while you can!
MELISSA DIANE SMITH is a health journalist, holistic nutrition expert, and health educator. She has a degree in Journalism from the University of Arizona and has been a holistic nutrition counselor in private practice for over 20 years. She has written several books on foods and health including Going Against the Grain: How Reducing and Avoiding Grains Can Revitalize Your Health and the companion guide Gluten Free Throughout the Year. She also is the author ofUser’s Guide to Preventing and Reversing Diabetes Naturally and the coauthor of Syndrome X: The Complete Nutritional Program to Prevent and Reverse Insulin Resistance. Many of her books have been translated and are available in other languages (Spanish, Korean and Indonesian). She lives in Tucson, Arizona.
Visit her website here.
To read some excerpts from “Going Against GMOs”, go here.
Do you avoid GMOs, if so, do you have any tips you’d like to share?
Peace & love,
*book was generously sent to me for review consideration, my passion on being non-GMO is 100% authentic!